DEFUND “SAFE SEX” PROGRAMS
Catalyst March Issue 2010
In a new study published in the Archives of Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine, abstinence-based sex education programs yielded results far superior to competing strategies. John B. Jemmott III, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, led the federally funded research. This study, which focused on African American students from four public middle schools in the Northeast between the years 2001 and 2004, was hailed by the scientific community for its methodological excellence.
A look at the evidence yields several conclusions, one of which is that “safe sex” programs are a danger to American youth and need to be defunded by the Obama administration immediately.
The student body was divided into four different groups: those who received an abstinence-only education; those who followed a “safe sex” curriculum; those who were exposed to a comprehensive program that included elements of both approaches; and those who were introduced to a “healthy living” curriculum, e.g., advice on eating and exercise.
The worst results stemmed from those who followed the “safe sex” strategy: 52 percent started having sex. The best results came from those who followed the abstinence-only approach: 33 percent started having sex. Those in the blended program, and those in the “healthy living” one, yielded results of 42 and 47 percent, respectively. In other words, even those kids who were not given a sex education program at all did better than those in the “safe sex” group.
The Obama administration mindlessly cut all funding for abstinence-only programs, citing the lack of scientific evidence for such models. Now that their beloved “here’s how to put a condom on a cucumber” approach to sex education is a proven disaster, it’s time to cut “safe sex” programs and put all the money into abstinence-only ones. It’s also time to fund voucher programs: black kids in Catholic schools succeed both in and out of the classroom.